Parmatech Corporation

Parmatech Corporation strives to offer the best solution package to our customers as defined by exceeding their expectations. Solutions include identifying prototyping needs, rapid prototyping, alloy development, metrology assistance, and identification and managing complex secondary operations.

Capabilities

Recognized leader and driver of innovation by the Metal Powder Industry Federation (MPIF) year after year.

Parmatech Corporation is a leading supplier of custom manufactured metal injection molding components.

Metal Injection Molding (MIM) is a low cost, high volume manufacturing process that produces parts to near net shape, reducing or eliminating the need for secondary and machining operations. The process technology excels in small parts of complex shape, enabling part manufacturing that may be prohibitive or impossible to make with conventional technologies.

Parmatech Corporation strives to offer the best solution package to our customers as defined by exceeding their expectations. Solutions include identifying prototyping needs, rapid prototyping, alloy development, metrology assistance, and identification and managing complex secondary operations.

  • The MIM Process
  • Materials
  • Chemistries & Properties
  • Part Selection
  • Tooling Philosophy
Metal Injection Molding (MIM) components for a wide variety of industrial applications. The MIM Process combines injection molding technology with powder metallurgy to achieve near-net shape, high volume production of complex mechanical components.

One Step at a Time

Parmatech works closely with customers to ensure the best production at the minimum cost. While MIM generally consists of a few main steps, we will optimize the material, binder system, and processing path for your application.

Tooling

MIM tooling is similar to tooling used in plastic injection molding. These tools can range from simple prototype tools to high volume multi-cavity production tools. Please see our Tooling Philosophy section for more information.

Compounding

We start with a fine metal powder (particle size approximately 10-20 microns) and mix this with a proprietary blend of plastics that we call “binders”. The powders are incorporated, or compounded, into the fluid binder and granulated to form a feedstock for an injection molding machine.

Molding

After compounding, the feedstock is injected into a mold to form a “green” part. The injection molding machine, similar to that used in the plastic injection molding industry, heats the feedstock and injects the viscous fluid into the mold. The MIM part in this molded state is often referred to as a ‘green’ part.

Debinding

The binders are removed through solvent and thermal processing. The step is called debinding, and helps separate the binder materials from the powder metal. Debinding can be done in two or three process steps, depending on the equipment capability.

Sintering

Finally, the parts are put through a high-temperature sintering furnace where the remaining binders are removed. The powder particles fuse together to reach 98%+ of theoretical density. During this critical step, the parts shrink approximately 20%. We utilize special techniques that result in exceptional metallurgical and dimensional controls, resulting in very repeatable and stable parts.

Afterward...

After sintering, the parts are inspected against high quality standards. At this point, additional operations – such as machining, heat treating or plating – may be undertaken to achieve tighter tolerances or enhanced properties.

Tolerances

Part design greatly impacts process capability. From uneven wall sections to features that need support through sintering, there are specific factors that determine the tolerances possible on a part. By working with you as early as possible in the MIM process, our sales and engineering staff can help you to match the process’ capability to the tolerances needed to achieve required design function. Without secondary operations, the MIM process is capable of ± 0.3% to ± 0.5% of a given dimension; for example, 1.000 ± 0.003 inches or 25 ± 0.075mm.

From Metal Powder Industries Federation (MPIF) standard materials to custom development of application specific alloys, Parmatech has the material solution for your demanding design requirements. Materials Scientists coupled with in-house custom alloy development allows for solutions beyond typical component suppliers.

If your desired material is not listed here, contact us and we’ll find a solution to meet your needs.

Material Group Alloy/Material Description
Low Alloy and Alloy Steels
MIM-2200 (Fe-2%Ni)
MIM-2700 (Fe-2%Ni)
MIM-4140
MIM-4605
High strength and hardness when heat treated
Austenitic Stainless Steels
304L
MIM-316L
Excellent cryogenic properties, superior corrosion resistance, moderate strength and high ductility
Ferritic Stainless Steels
MIM-430L
Possess good corrosion and magnetic properties
Martensitic Stainless Steels
MIM-420
MIM-440
Designed to provide moderate corrosion resistance with excellent hardness, strength and wear
Precipitation Hardening Stainless Steels
MIM-17-4 PH
High strength, toughness and hardness, with good corrosion resistance.
Soft Magnetic Materials
MIM-2200 (Fe-2%Ni)
MIM-Fe50%Ni (Fe-50%Ni)
MIM-430L
MIM-Fe-3%Si (Fe-3%Si)
MIM-Fe50%Co
Soft ferromagnetic materials
Controlled Expansion and Sealing Materials
MIM-F15 (Kovar® Alloy)*
Uniform and low thermal expansion alloys
Copper
MIM-Cu
High thermal conductivity and good electrical properties
Tungsten
W-Ni alloy
High thermal conductivity and density, good electrical properties

One Step at a Time

Material Group Alloy* Yield Strength (MPa) UTS (MPa) Elongation (%) Density (g/cm³) Hardness
Low Alloy & Alloy Steels
MIM-2200
(Fe-2%Ni)
as-sintered
140
300
35
7.60
45 HRB
MIM-2200
(Fe-2%Ni)
Heat treated**
200-600
380-650
2 to 20
7.60
>50 HRB
(surface)
MIM-2700
(Fe-2%Ni)
as-sintered
300
390
390
7.60
70 HRB
MIM-2700
(Fe-7%Ni)
Heat treated**
670
830
9
7.60
>55 HRC
(surface)
4140**
1200
1550
4
44 HRC
MIM-4605
as-sintered
205
440
15
7.5
62 HRB
MIM-4605
quenched and tempered
1480
1655
2.0
7.5
48 HRC
Stainless Steels
MIM-316L
180
500
50
7.80
67 HRB
304 L
140
500
70
7.75
60 HRB
MIM-17-4 PH
As-sintered
730
900
6
7.60
25 HRC
Soft Magnetic Alloys
MIM-430L
240
410
25
7.50
65 HRB
MIM-Fe-3%Si
360
530
30
7.50
80 HRB
MIM-Fe-50%Ni
160
450
30
7.70
50 HRB
Controlled Expansion Alloy
F15
300
450
35
7.8
75 HRB

* Alloys with MIM prefix are also listed in the MPIF Standard 35 (2000 edition) Materials Standard for Metal Injection Molded Parts

** Depending on the type of heat treatment a range of mechanical properties can be obtained in MIM-2200 and MIM-2700, 4140, MIM-4605

Note: Parmatech does not warranty that these materials are fit for any particular application.
All materials need to be tested by the customer to assure that they meet minimum performance criteria.

Typical Magnetic Properties of Parmatech MIM Alloys

Alloy Density (g/cm³) Maximum Permeability,
µ max
Coercive Field
Hc (Oe)
Residual Induction
Br (kG)
Induction, B(kG) @ H=5 Oe 10 Oe 15 Oe
MIM-2200
7.75
3,300
1.50
7.7
12.0 14.0 15.2
MIM-2700
7.85
1,700
2.30
6.2
7.8 11.5 13.9
MIM-Fe-50%Ni
8.0
30,000
0.17
6.5
11.4 12.5 12.9
MIM-Fe-50%Co
7.7
4,800
1.5
14
MIM-Fe-3%Si
7.55
6,700
0.69
8.7
62 HRB 12.5 13.5 14.0
MIM-430L
7.60
5,000
0.67
7.3
9.75 10.5 11.0

1 oersted (Oe) = 79.55 ampere/meter (A/m)

1 kilogauss (kG) = 0.1 tesla (T)

Note: Parmatech does not warranty that these materials are fit for any particular application. All materials need to be tested by the customer to assure that they meet minimum performance criteria.

Nominal Chemical Composition (%) of Common Parmatech MIM Alloys

Alloy* Fe Ni Cr C Si Mo Cu Mn Others
MIM-2200
Bal
1.5-2.5
0.05 max
1.0 max
0.5 max
MIM-2700
Bal
6.5-8.5
0.05 max
1.0 max
0.5 max
MIM-316L
Bal
10-14
16-18
0.03 max
1.0 max
2-3
2.0 max

* Alloys with MIM prefix are also listed in the MPIF Standard 35 (2000 edition)
Materials Standard for Metal Injection Molded Parts

Small mechanical components with complex geometry are ideal candidates for MIM. High volume applications
maximize the cost saving benefits inherent with injection molding, giving design engineers a powerful tool to reduce cost on difficult to machine parts.

There are four main considerations for determining if a part is a good PIM candidate:

  • Size
  • Annual Volume
  • Material
  • Complexity
Characteristic Minimum Maximum Optimum
Mass
0.01 g

0.0004 oz
250 g

8.82oz
<50 g

<1.75 oz
Wall Thickness
0.125 mm

0.005 in
7.62 mm

0.300 in
2.03 mm

0.080 in
Annual Usage
25,000
millions
>100,000
At Parmatech, we work with our customer to identify critical characteristics in order to help us develop and customize a product quality plan that meets your needs.

At Parmatech, we believe that tooling is the largest factor in determining a robust and efficient product development timeline, as well as future production stability.. Therefore, it is critical to decide the best route to take when designing and constructing tools for MIM. We offer many flexible options, depending on the stage of your design.

Short-Run Prototype Tools

Short-run prototype tools are useful for a very limited number of parts (100-1,000), when several design options are being considered. Typical lead times are as short as 4-5 weeks, depending on part complexity.

Medium-Run Prototype Tools

Medium-run portotype tools have a typical lifetime of 50,000 shots. They are used for designs that are fairly mature, and are used to gain valuable insight to multi-cavity production tool design. Constructed of soft-tool steels to facilitate quick fabrication, their typical lead time is 4-8 weeks, depending on part complexity.

Production Tools

Production tools may be single or multiple cavity. They are constructed of premium-grade tool steels from reputable USA based mold vendor, with advanced cooling and hot runners, if required. Their typical lifetime is 750,000 shots. Our robust maintenance program has been known to keep molds in service into the millions of shots, adding further value in reducing requalification of new molds to extend product life. Tool geometry, complexity, and moving parts all influence shot life. Their typical lead time is 8-10 weeks, depending on design complexity.

Fast MIM

  • Prototype MIM materials in as little as 2 weeks
  • Low volume production in MIM materials 3 months or less
  • Reduced investment for low volume production (compared to Conventional MIM)
  • Material and manufacturing technology options to meet your specific needs

HD MIM

  • High precision MIM material components achieving 5X the accuracy of Conventional MIM
  • Complex geometries not possible in Conventional MIM
  • Customized alloys to meet specific application needs

MICROLUTION SOLUTION

  • Small footprint (2’ x 2’)
  • Working area ideal for MIM-sized parts
  • High accuracy and speed by optimizing to MIM-sized application

AUTOMATED SOLUTION

More information about Parmatech’s partnership with HP and HP’s MetalJet technology coming soon!

ONSHORING

Every ATW part is USA made, in a lean manufacturing environment, exactly to spec, no compromise in raw materials or quality systems. This means fewer barriers like time zone challenges and logistics issues for customers in the US, and reliable quality at globally competitive prices for customers around the world.

DESIGN FOR MANUFACTURING

Your metal component should be the very best solution possible. In pursuit of that end, we internalize your environment, look at the big picture of your application, and explore our wide array of technologies for the lowest-cost to you. We anticipate and minimize risk. We shape to you.